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Physical fitness is a staple part of our daily lives, and this is evident in the many different sports we play, from swimming to football to yoga and other adrenaline-inducing activities that help us work out while having fun.
Take mountain biking, for example. It’s challenging, it’s a good workout, and it helps us improve many different skills. However, it can be quite difficult to find good mountain bikes if you’re on a tight budget.
That’s why we’re here to help. We scoured the market and reviewed hundreds of options so you don’t have to. The result? Comprehensive mountain bike reviews of the best mountain bikes under 300 dollars that are sure to get you exercising and exploring the wilderness in no time.
- 1 Top 10 Affordable Mountain Bikes
- 1.1 Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike
- 1.2 Schwinn High Timber Youth and Adult Mountain Bike
- 1.3 Northwoods Aluminum Full Suspension Mountain Bike
- 1.4 Xspec 21-speed Folding Mountain Bike for Adults
- 1.5 24″ Roadmaster Granite Peak Boys’ Mountain Bike
- 1.6 27.5″ Royce Union RMT Mens 21-Speed All-Terrain Mountain Bike
- 1.7 Outroad Mountain Bike 26-inch Wheel 21 Speed
- 1.8 Mongoose 27.5″ R4054WMC Ledge 2.1 Men’s Bike
- 1.9 Eurobike YX X127.5 Mountain Bike
- 1.10 Huffy 26-inch Oxide Mens Mountain Bike
- 2 How To Find The Best Mountain Bike Under $300
- 3 Conclusion
What To Expect At This Price Range
One of the first things you need to understand is that mountain bikes, in general, can be quite expensive. In fact, most entry-level options start at around 500 dollars. That said, it’s not impossible to find cheap but quality bikes that will serve you well.
Now, you shouldn’t expect anything more than basic gear and component quality. The frame will also be heavier than, say, carbon fiber or even aluminum since these materials really drive up the cost of a bicycle.
But as long as you focus on top mountain bike brands, you’ll be able to find a quality mountain bike for under $300. Let’s get started!
Top 10 Affordable Mountain Bikes
Without further ado, here are the eight best mountain bikes under 300 dollars:
Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike
When it comes to the best mountain bikes for the money, nothing beats the Huffy Hardtail mountain bike with its vibrant graphics and excellent overall design. All its necessary equipment is perfectly integrated, so it’s really easy to assemble right out of the box.
Its signature frame is made with lightweight aluminum and measures 17 inches (a 15-inch frame is also available). Since it weighs lighter than steel, it offers more rotating speed, making it easier to pedal if you’re looking for speed and acceleration. And, there are the linear brakes for when you need to do quick stops.
Moreover, it also boasts of a Shimano drivetrain, which includes the TY-30 rear derailleur and the Shimano Is Fire Plus trigger, so you can enjoy all the 21-speed settings with smooth transitions. It even comes with a premium padded saddle for lasting comfort. All in all, it’s easy to see why it’s the best budget mountain bike on the market.
- Lightweight and easy to assemble
- Premium padded ATB saddle and pedals
- Responsive suspension for riding comfort
- 26” knobby tires with superior dry and wet grip
- Linear brakes for safe stopping power
- 10 year warranty for the frame
Schwinn High Timber Youth and Adult Mountain Bike
We also fell in love with the Schwinn High Timber youth and adult mountain bike, an ideal entry-level cycle that lets you comfortably master all terrains. It’s highly responsive and reliable, not to mention really affordable even when you’re on a tight budget.
The Schwinn High Timber is outfitted with all the best features that make for a great and safe road and cross-country riding experience. The entire thing from frame to pedals is created with top quality materials to give you a sturdy, durable, and long-lasting ride.
Among its excellent features include the Schwinn mountain style steel frame and matching Schwinn suspension fork, the 21 speed Shimano drivetrain with twist shifters and a sleek rear derailleur, and the crisp alloy linear-pull brakes for all-condition stopping power.
- Sleek, sturdy, responsive, and reliable
- Full 21-speed Shimano drivetrain
- Light alloy rims with knobby mountain bike tires
- Schwinn alloy cranks + triple chainrings
- Available in a 29” matte black frame
Northwoods Aluminum Full Suspension Mountain Bike
If you’re on the hunt for the best full suspension mountain bike, look no further than the Northwoods aluminum full suspension mountain bike. It boasts of smooth performance with great stopping power in any situation, so you can safely ride on either side of the mountain road.
It’s also lightweight at just 25 pounds, and really durable, too, with a 275-pound carrying capacity. Furthermore, it comes with a durable and lightweight steel crown fork to make a comfortable ride.
Plus, there’s also the 21-speed twist shifters and Shimano rear derailleur, along with the steel triple crank. Not to mention, it’s a perfect size and weight for anyone over five feet tall. To sum it up, it’s a great bicycle at an even greater price.
- Lightweight frame with full suspension
- Smooth and solid performance
- Reliable brakes for all-condition stopping
- Great value for money
- Available in 2 colors and 2 sizes
Xspec 21-speed Folding Mountain Bike for Adults
Want a unique and highly portable option? Check out the Xspec 21-speed folding mountain bike for adults, one of the best cheap mountain bikes you’ll ever find with this awesome folding feature. This ride is durable, reliable, and highly versatile.
For instance, you can use it for daily commutes to work or school, as well as hitting the trails on the weekends. Its carbon steel frame is also top of the line. It may weigh like a feather, but it’s certainly durable and highly resistant to dents and corrosion.
What’s more, it also features a full suspension system at the bike’s front and rear sections, so you get to enjoy reduced vibration and shocks from the bumpy terrain. And as a 21-speed mountain bike, you also get all that power, speed, and seamless traction wherever you go.
- Foldable carbon steel frame
- Tough MTB tires with rugged tread patterns
- Front and rear disc brakes for strong stops
- Easily portable and space-saving
- Versatile and highly functional
24″ Roadmaster Granite Peak Boys’ Mountain Bike
One of the best men’s mountain bikes we found is the 24” Roadmaster Granite Peak boys’ mountain bike, an all-around bicycle for rough terrain that’s as incredible on intense, unpaved paths as it is agreeable in cruising your neighborhood streets.
Perhaps the reason it so easily stands out from the competition is that it boasts of a mountain outline frame with hi-ten steel along with a front suspension fork to make for a fun and easy rides that open possibilities for exploration.
Of course, it also comes with bumpy tire treads to offer plenty of security on soil roads and pavement alike, along with the combination rims that are the perfect blend of stability and strength. All this, with the 18-speed twist shifters plus the Shimano rear derailleur, you’re sure to perform like a star in executing your tricks on the trail.
- Mountain all-edge steel frame with front suspension
- 18-speed twist shifters for smooth trail shifts
- Straight draw brakes for crisp and snappy stops
- Compound wheels and adjustable seat post
- 26” frame for riders 18yo+, 5’2” to 5’10” tall
27.5″ Royce Union RMT Mens 21-Speed All-Terrain Mountain Bike
Another stunning option in the men’s mountain bikes category is the Royce Union RMT all-terrain mountain bike with its easy to maneuver hardtail suspension and superior traction that’s perfect for beginner cyclists. Not to mention, it comes with a huge 27.5-inch lightweight aluminum frame with matching wheels and pedals.
In other words, it’s easy to engage, and it’s fast. You also get to enjoy variations with speed and power thanks to the 21-speed drivetrain, while the disc braking mechanism keeps you safe with progressive and reliable stopping power.
The best part? You don’t have to sacrifice comfort in the name of performance since this bike comes with a fully padded seat and soft rubber insulated handlebar grips. All in all, it’s a comfortable and rider-friendly option for beginners and skilled riders alike.
- Lightweight aluminum frame in 3 sizes (18 to 22”)
- Hardtail suspension for reduced vibration and shock
- Superior traction for steep climbs
- 21-speed drivetrain for smooth shifting and accelerations
- Durable quality for an affordable price
Outroad Mountain Bike 26-inch Wheel 21 Speed
We also really like the Outroad 26 inch mountain bike, which is made of all the highest quality materials to give you a lightweight ride that’s highly functional and can perform well on any road, even upon the hills.
For one, it boasts of six-story spokes on its wheels for enhanced functionality, along with front and rear disc brakes for secure and stable stopping.
This dual suspension bicycle also offers a stable and comfortable ride on the mountain tracks with its fixed bike seat that’s really comfortable for long-distance travel, and the 21-speed gears that let you go as fast on the road and high on the trail as you want.
- Lightweight aluminum frame construction
- Durable, easy to use, and comfortable
- Makes for a fast yet safe and stable ride
- Also available in a folding carbon fiber frame
- Suitable for men and women at least 5’6” tall
Mongoose 27.5″ R4054WMC Ledge 2.1 Men’s Bike
You should also check out the MOngoose 27.5” R4054WMC Ledge 2.1 men’s bike, good quality, and dependable mountain bike equipped with full suspension for smooth and comfortable rides on the bumpiest trails. There are even front and rear shock-absorbing springs to really up the comfort.
You’ll also enjoy the MTB tires with their superior traction that can easily and confidently conquer any type of road surface, even muddy and wet terrain, thanks to their large tread blocks, deep grooves, and seamless bites.
To complete the package, this mountain bike also comes with a linear rim braking system that’s safe, efficient, and dependable. Overall, it’s one of the best options for mountain bikes under 300 dollars, for beginner and seasoned riders alike.
- Single speed gear shifting for the right level of challenge
- Full front and rear suspension fork for smooth rides
- Handlebars make for an ergonomic riding position
- Rubberized grip handles for comfort
- Linear rim V-brakes for smooth stops
Eurobike YX X127.5 Mountain Bike
The Eurobike YX X127.5 mountain bike is a beautiful ride for so many reasons, which is why we’re so sure that you’ll love it too. For one thing, it features a front suspension that makes for a really smooth and comfortable ride.
It also makes use of a double-disc braking system that enhances your braking efficiency by providing you with crisp and quick stops for your own safety. And, it comes with a 21-speed full Shimano drivetrain, from the shifters to the front and rear derailleurs.
To top it all off, it’s really easy to assemble as well, since it comes 85% pre-assembled, so you only need to install the handlebar, bike seat, pedals, and front wheel, then air up the tires to the recommended tire pressure. You’ll even get all the tools you’ll need for assembly!
- Light steel frame and fork with aluminum stem
- Double-walled alloy rims, 27.5” tires
- Suitable for riders 5’7” to 5’11” tall
- 330 lbs of maximum load capacity
Huffy 26-inch Oxide Mens Mountain Bike
An impressionable mountain bike when it comes to a great balance of fun and power on the trail and any other road surface you can think of is the Huffy 26 inch Oxide men’s mountain bike. This probably has to do with the fact that it features a hardtail suspension system that effectively minimized road vibrations so you can sail smoothly over rocky surfaces.
It also comes with large and wide tires that help you keep a straight path while balancing the bicycle on tricky terrains. Plus, the 21-speed gears are there to help you successfully overcome uphill and downhill trails without breaking a sweat.
Finally, your safety is never compromised with the reliable rim brake system that works great in offering both abrupt and slow stopping forces depending on your needs. All things considered, it’s a great mountain trail bicycle for its price.
- 21-speed drivetrain and hardtail suspension for versatile riding comfort
- Large and wide MTB tires for easy balancing and tracking
- Rim brake mechanism for effective braking on short and long distances
- Durable handles on brake levers + comfortable handlebar grips
How To Find The Best Mountain Bike Under $300
Mountain bikes are complicated rides with many different parts and components to make for a versatile, high functioning ride. As such, there are just as many things you need to consider in order to find the most suitable bicycle for yourself.
It’s even made harder by the sheer number of options on the market for good quality mountain bikes. So, to make your decision process easier, focus on the most important aspects of riding a mountain bike, especially on the things that directly influence meeting your needs and demands on the road and trail.
Most importantly, base your decision on how you want to use the mountain bike, such as where and what kind of terrain you want to ride on, as well as of course your budget.
Why Ride A Mountain Bike?
If you like to ride on mountain trails and take on the challenge of ridges and hills, mountain bikes are what you need. It’s the best kind of bicycle that lets you overcome tough hilly conditions and bumpy road and off-road surfaces.
A mountain bike is lightweight and excellently balanced. It’s outfitted with outstanding gears to offer you the versatility of different riding modes and functions. It also helps you improve your skill and capacity in riding a bike.
If you have the right bike that meets your needs, you’ll be able to enjoy an incredibly fun and satisfying activity where you can learn new skills, explore trails, understand and appreciate movement, and spend quality time with your fellow cyclists.
What you have to understand is there are different kinds of mountain bikes designed for different purposes. Some mountain bikes can be used on smooth dirt paths, some on extremely precipitous terrain, and some on both. Think of it this way- not all terrains have the same intensity, and any kind of ride must be able to match that intensity level.
Perhaps the first thing you need to decide on is whether you actually need a mountain bike. For example, if you plan on riding on rugged terrain, you’ll need a mountain bike that comes with an aggressive frame geometry, larger tires, and a full suspension.
Meanwhile, if you’ll likely be riding on relatively smooth and easy dirt paths, a more affordable and lighter bicycle with an upright and comfortable frame geometry, fast-rolling tires, and limited suspension may be more suitable.
That said, if you will only be riding on paved roads and city streets or around the neighborhood, you may not need a mountain bike altogether.
Looking for a different type of bike? How about a multi-use hybrid bike?
One of the most important things that determine a bike’s price, quality, durability, and weight is the frame material. It also affects the bicycle’s gear functions, speed, strength, and longevity. To put it simply, the bike frame is of utmost importance.
There are many different materials that bike frames are made of, ranging from cheap plastics on kids’ bikes to ultra-expensive titanium on the top-of-the-line bicycles that you’ll see in custom bike shops and on the pro race track.
However, when it comes to mountain bikes under 300 dollars, your choice is largely limited to steel and aluminum. Steel is very affordable. It’s also tough, durable, long-lasting, and can withstand a lot of abuse. But, it’s also heavy and has difficulty holding gears.
Meanwhile, aluminum is a lot more lightweight and flexible, but it comes with a slight increase in price when compared to steel frames.
The suspension is a must-have on bicycles that want to be able to offer a smooth and comfortable ride on rough and bumpy terrain. When it comes to mountain bikes, you generally have three options to choose from in terms of suspension:
Rigid / No Suspension
Rigid mountain bikes are made with zero suspension on the bike frame, hence the rigid front fork. These bicycles are intended for smooth terrain, including paved roads, gravel, and light trails. A bike with no suspension is lighter and cheaper but feels very bumpy on rough terrain.
This no-suspension feature is not as common on mountain bikes, since they are primarily designed for trail use. You’ll find a lot more options for rigid bikes among other bicycle types that are intended for use on smooth, paved roads.
Hardtail / Front Suspension
Mountain bikes that have a suspension on the front fork but not on the bike frame are called hardtail mountain bikes. These cycles are made for riding variable terrain, so you can go really fast on a smooth surface, and be able to enjoy a comfortable ride on moderately rugged terrain.
For instance, let’s say a mountain bike has a 90mm front suspension, along with 3×8 gears, 29” wheels, and rim brakes. This bike will be ideal for smooth trails, while offering a bit of comfort on dirt paths, and to a lesser extent, on somewhat rugged terrain.
Finally, there are mountain bikes with full suspension, meaning, the bike has a suspension on the front fork, along with a rear suspension on the bike frame. These bicycles come in a wide variety of options, from 50mm front and rear suspension for mildly bumpy terrains to 200mm suspension, which are the largest of all full-suspension bikes and are made for downhill racing.
For example, a mountain bike with a full suspension of 120mm suspension in the front fork and the rear of the frame, along with 27.5” wheels, a 1×9 gear setup, and disc brakes will do perfectly well on a moderately steep downhill trail. It can perform better on a steeper trail if the suspension is increased.
You also need to account for the gearing ratio of the mountain bike. To give you an idea, the common gear setup of mountain bikes is to use two to three gears in the front along with eight gear options in the rear. This means you get 24 different speed gear choices. Also, most, if not all mountain bikes come with both front and rear derailleurs.
The thing is, while more gears sound better, it actually just makes things more complicated since there’s a lot of considerable overlap in the gear ratio, and the gears may not even correlate with their supposed range. For instance, a small gear on a 1×12 gear setup may be easier and better for challenging climbs on steep hills, as compared to that of a 3×8 gear setup.
To make things simpler, just think of the terrain and incline you’re planning to ride on. Flat terrains don’t really require the use of gearing, so you’ll do fine with a single-speed bike, but multi-speeds are a must on steep hills and difficult terrain.
Remember, it’s always best to stay on the safe side, and that means gearing up with the best mountain bike helmet for heady protection.
Don’t forget to factor in the bike’s braking system, as this is what determines your stopping power and your overall safety while riding. When it comes to mountain bikes, there are two general types of braking systems: disc brakes and rim brakes.
Disc brakes use extra discs near the wheel’s center where you’ll find the brake caliper attached to, whereas rim brakes use a caliper to squeeze down on the wheel’s rim in order to physically stop if from rolling.
That said, disc brakes are safer and more powerful, and therefore more ideal for mountain biking, since rim brakes don’t really offer sufficient braking power when it comes to riding on rugged trails and steep descents. Though, they’re good for flat and mild terrains.
The size of a bicycle’s wheels matter. This highly influences how your ride feels and how the bicycle handles on the road and trail. Plus, the wheel size affects the bike’s fit and comfort on your physical build.
With adult mountain bikes, you typically have a choice between 26”, 27.5”, and 29” wheels. Here’s how each one differs apart from their physical dimensions:
- 26” wheels can be found on children’s mountain bikes and older MTBs for adults. These used to be the standard, but nowadays, bigger tires are preferred for mountain biking
- 27.5” wheels are fast, smooth, comfortable, and snappy. They also make for a better fitting and plushier ride, hence their newfound popularity.
- 29” wheels are made for speed and performance, especially when it comes to rolling over rugged terrain, as well as climbing and descending steep hills
Want to know how a different sized, the wider wheel feels like? Check out this review of the best fat bikes in 2020!
Along with the wheel size, you also have to account for the frame size of the mountain bike, as this is what really determines whether the bike fits you well, meaning, whether you can ride comfortably without straining yourself or causing danger to yourself. Remember, choosing the right size bike is important no matter what type of bicycle you want to ride.
When it comes to adult mountain bikes, the sizes typically range from small to extra large. You can use the sizing guide below to give you an idea, but it’s always best to base your decision on the manufacturer’s size chart.
|Cyclist height||Frame size in inches||Frame size (S-XL)|
|5’2” to 5’6”||15 to 16 inches||Small|
|5’6” to 5’10”||17 to 18 inches||Medium|
|5’10” to 6’1”||19 to 20 inches||Large|
|6’1” to 6’2”||23 to 24 inches||Extra large|
Keep in mind that this is just a simple guide for reference. Riders still have final say on what size bike they prefer. For example, if you’re in between sizes, you can base your decision on the length of your legs or your inseam, aka, if you have longer legs, it’s ideal to size down, and if your torso is longer, it’s more preferable to size up.
There are a few other key elements to take into account if you really want to find the best mountain bikes under 300 dollars. Factoring in as many things as you can in your buying decision helps ensure that you get the best possible bike for your money.
What bicycle-style do you want? What kind of riding do you want to achieve? Are you planning on going on bike paths and taking long-distance rides? Remember, your bicycle is your only friend on the road, so you and the bike need to be on good terms with each other.
This means choosing the right style of bike for your specific needs, preferences, and riding style. Make sure to choose a bicycle-style that really fits who you are as a rider so you can make the most out of your buying decision.
Aside from the things we already talked about earlier, such as the gears, brakes, and suspension, there are other key features that you need to check before you make a purchase. For one thing, do they perform well? What you want here are high performing elements that really give you the best value for your money.
For instance, what brand are the components, such as the drivetrain? Are the pedals great, or do they suck? Is the seat comfortable for rigorous and long-distance rides? How about the chain? What is it made of? Does the bike come with accessories, like chain guards and fenders?
To reiterate, buying the best mountain bike for under 300 dollars means being keen and smart in your buying decision. In other words, you have to factor in every single thing, both big and small, so you can really make sure that the bike performs well and lasts long, especially considering its price.
For one thing, not all riders have the same biking needs. Maybe you want a fast bike, while others prefer to go on long rides. Some cyclists like to engage in downhill racing, while others fancy the test of stamina that uphill climbs come with.
Our review of the best bikes above offer plenty of options for these unique riding styles. You just need to decide which one is best for you depending on your specific needs as a rider. And even if you choose something that’s not on this list, make sure to keep in mind the important factors we talked about in our buying guide you can find a great bicycle even with a limited budget.